|Wikileaks:||View 02ANKARA8845 at Wikileaks.org|
|Tags:||OPRC KMDR TU Press Summaries|
|Redacted:||This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.|
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ANKARA 008845 SIPDIS DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EUR/SE, EUR/PD, NEA/PD, DRL JCS PASS J-5/CDR S. WRIGHT E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: OPRC, KMDR, TU, Press Summaries SUBJECT: ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2002 THIS REPORT WILL PRESENT A TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER TWO THEMES: HEADLINES BRIEFING ------- TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY Wednesday, December 4, 2002 HEADLINES MASS APPEALS Air-Base Crisis - Hurriyet Bush invites Erdogan officially - Hurriyet Erdogan will be at the White House next week - Sabah US pressures Turkey - Turkiye Turkey requests $25 billion from US for possible operation against Iraq - Milliyet OPINION MAKERS Agreement reached on Iraq - Cumhuriyet Ankara accepts Wolfowitz and Grossman's request for Turkish bases - Radikal US: Let's plan together and let you have what you want in Northern Iraq - Zaman Wolfowitz: If you don't want a Kurdish State, you should enter Iraq - Yeni Safak FINANCIAL JOURNALS U.S. pressure mounts - Finansal Forum U.S. fiscal support with `Iraq condition' attached -- Dunya BRIEFING DepSec Wolfowitz and U/S Grossman Visit: All papers highlight the visit under banner headlines and feature extensive front page coverage as well as details of US- Turkish discussions. The general consensus among reporters is that the talks centered on Turkey's willingness to cooperate with the US in a possible operation in Iraq, and the US list of demands and offers of compensation in return. The demands are listed as follows: Turkey should allow its bases and ports to be used by US troops and aircrafts. Turkey should be a logistical base and supply center in the event of a military strike. Turkey should be prepared to serve as a second operational headquarters after Tampa, Florida. The option for allowing Turkish troops to join British and American troops in northern Iraq should also be considered by Turkey. In exchange for meeting these demands, Wolfowitz and Grossman reportedly offered a total of 3.5 billion dollars in aid. Some papers talk about an additional 20 billion dollars of aid as well. The support will be given within a three-year period, and will also include the forgiveness of Turkey's FMS debts, the establishment of qualifying industrial zones, encouraging US investments in Turkey, and some favors on trade quotas. Reports also noted that the US affirmed its commitment to prevent a separate Kurdish state in northern Iraq. The U.S. stance against a Kurdish state came as a relief to Turkish officials, and made Ankara more willing to allow use of its base facilities. All papers report the `breaking news' that Foreign Minister Yasar Yakis, following his meeting with British Foreign Minister Straw, said that Turkey will open its airbases and facilities for the US in the event of a military operation. However, mass appeal "Hurriyet" fronts a flashy story that referred to the issue as a `base crisis.' According to "Hurriyet," Yakis' announcement caused serious concerns among military officials and Foreign Ministry bureaucrats. Deputy Chief of General Staff Gen. Buyukanit told "Hurriyet" that permission for use of the airbases requires a political decision, and that the military is not aware that such a decision has been taken. General Buyukanit said that the FM's statement `might be his personal opinion.' In a press release issued after midnight, the MFA clarified the Foreign Minister's remarks, saying that `Turkey has not committed itself. Minister Yakis was talking about possible options in the spirit of good, friendly relations with the US.' Reports also note that both Wolfowitz and Grossman reiterated strong US support for Turkey's EU accession, and underlined the importance of settling the Cyprus issue as soon as possible. Erdogan to Washington: All papers report that AKP leader Erdogan received an official invitation from the White House. The date of Erdogan's meeting with President Bush has been set for December 10. The invitation was extended to Erdogan during the dinner at the American Embassy residence in honor of Wolfowitz and Grossman. Erdogan changed his travel plans immediately, and decided to go to Denmark before the EU summit and fly to Washington from there. EU Reforms: The AKP government has prepared a series of legal reforms and sent the reform package to Parliament for final consideration. The package would make closure of political parties more difficult, bring tougher measures to prevent torture, and ease the restrictions on minority foundations wishing to acquire property. The changes will also pave the way for Erdogan to become eligible to run for parliament.
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